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7 Things I’ve Learned from Garage Games Training

Liftweight

Photo courtesy of Glen Jones

The Mid-Atlantic Garage Games are creeping up on us! We’ve been training hard for about two months now, and we’ve got one left to go. So here’s what I’ve taken so far from my experience training for this competition:

  1. Two- and three-a-days are rough. And time consuming. I’ve spent more time at the box than I have at my house some days. Extra volume takes a lot out of you. I’m at the point where my days with only one workout and a skill feel like rest days. If you had told me a day with a WOD would feel like that two months ago, I would’ve laughed at you.
  2. More training = more food. OMG – I thought I ate a lot before. Ha! I probably eat the equivalent of one extra meal more everyday than I was eating before I began training for this competition.
  3. If I don’t sleep, I can just forget about it. There’s just no way to do 2 or more WOD’s in a day and work on skills if I don’t get at the very least 6 or 7 hours of sleep. I will bomb. Sleep is CRUCIAL.
  4. Sometimes when I think I’m giving 100%, I’m not. Really pushing myself these last two months since I signed up for the games has made me realize the distinction between my potential (what I can give) and my performance (what I choose to give). Sometimes these are vastly different. I’ve been trying more and more to make them match up, but it can be incredibly hard to do that. Some days you just don’t feel like pushing through the pain barrier to crank out those couple extra reps. Maybe you ate a little too heavily beforehand, or you had one too many shots the night before. Whatever the reason, you make up excuses in your head during your workout for why it’s okay for you to give less than your best. That’s not going to fly when you’re neck and neck with someone at the competition. This is my biggest area of struggle right now – envisioning what it will be like when I’m there, and trying to figure out how I’m going to out-perform that other person. I am definitely my own worst enemy.
  5. Go hard, but don’t go overboard. Two- and three-a-days are necessary when training like this, but it’s important to realize your limits and the rest your body needs. I’ve been pretty consistent with a 3-on, 1-off, 2-on, 1-off scheme for my week, and it seems to be working well. Rest days aren’t binge drink in front of the TV days, though. If I’m not mobilizing properly on my rest days, the next day I’m still just as sore as I was before.
  6. I’m not very competitive. Yikes, right?! Yes and no. I am slowly learning what it means to really have the desire to win. I never played sports as a kid, so the closest I got to competing was trying to move up levels in my dance classes. It’s not really the same thing. It’s been fun and challenging trying to change my attitude about my performance, because I’ve really never had to do something like this before. More than anything, I hope becoming a little more competitive will help improve #4, and push me to give as much as I can, instead of as much as I want to. That might be the difference between winning and losing.
  7. I love Crossfit. I knew I loved it before, but this has changed it a lot for me. It’s just such a great thing, from the camaraderie to the physical transformation to the overall healthy atmosphere. I find myself more and more advocating that others join, or at least try it out, because I really feel strongly that Crossfit is the best way to get in shape, stay that way, and feel good about all the hard work you put in. And I’m sure everyone thinks this about their home gym, but my box really is the best.

As always, please feel free to leave some love! I would love to hear about other experiences you’ve had training for competitions or whatever else you have on your mind.

Weekly WOD Rundown

Hi there, faithful followers. Please excuse my absence the past few weeks. I was super busy with finals and such, but I’m happy to report that I’m all graduated with my BA in English, and the next stop is grad school in the fall!

Anyway, I’ve been thinking about the format of this site, and I think it’ll be best to change the weekly WOD’s from just a rundown of every single workout I do (cause I do a lot of them, and it’s probably pretty boring to read if I don’t have much to say about a particular one) to focusing on two or three from that week that have particularly stood out. So we’ll see how that goes.

I have also begun training for the Mid-Atlantic Garage Games in August, which will be held right here at our awesome Virginia Beach Sportsplex. I’m going to be competing with a team from my box – two guys and two girls, including me – and I’m incredibly excited for it! It’s already proving to be challenging and demanding, but I’m loving the added motivation that comes with pursuing a goal like this. So anticipate hearing lots about my trials and successes with that extra training too.

WODs that sucked this past week:
Tuesday, 5/14
“Tabata Something Else”:
Max reps of tabata pullups, pushups, situps, squats with no rest in between.

You probably know, but tabata anything is 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest for 8 rounds. If you haven’t done this with any exercise yet… please go experience it. It’s just insane. Unfortunately I ripped my hand by the third round of pullups, so the next five rounds were pretty painful. And the pushups! If you really want a humbling experience, do tabata pushups. I was down to 4 a round by the last couple sets. Situps and squats were a nice break, until the very end when I was about 90% sure my legs were actually on fire. At the end of this, I’m sure everything hurt but the only thing I noticed were my poor legs. So yeah, this is a great workout if you want to completely burn out your major muscles. Just remember each time – you can do anything for twenty seconds, right?
Result: 285 reps + one gross ripped callus

tabatacallus

Wednesday, 5/15
5 Rounds for time:
9 Deadlift (95/135)
6 Hang power snatch
3 Overhead squat

This sucked because, plain and simple, my overhead needs serious work. Snatches are a definite weakness, meaning hang snatches are just a total nuisance for me. After ripping my hand the day before, I could barely grip the bar properly either, which is part of why this wasn’t a great workout for me. I definitely can’t blame it all on my hand, though. I’ve got to work on my stability and confidence in my overhead squats and snatches if I want to improve here.
I’m not sure of my exact time for this, but I know my weight was only a disappointing 65 lb.

Favorite WODs this week:
Monday, 5/20
“Elizabeth”:
21-15-9 reps for time:
Clean (95/135)
Ring Dip
Then rest until 10-minute cap reached
Run 1 mile

I liked this because I’m pretty comfortable with a 95 lb. clean, and because I really need work with ring dips if I ever want to get a muscle-up.
Result: Elizabeth – 7:55, blue band for ring dips. Mile – 7:22

Tuesday, 5/21
5×3 Back squat, Increasing
Then 3 rounds for time:
12 Wallballs (16 lb/20 lb)
12 Box jumps (20 in/24 in)
12 Toes to bar

I didn’t think I would like this WOD because of my intense hatred for wallballs. But all my hatred has turned into hard work to get better at them, and I did the first two rounds of wallballs all unbroken and the last round in two sets of 6. I actually surprised myself with my time on this one. Yay!
Result: 5:44, Rx

Alright, I’m off to do some heavy push presses and front squats, then a surprise team workout that I’m sure will be just as fun-filled. As always, feel free to leave your thoughts or advice! Ideas for a team name are also welcome!